More than 1 million affected by Indian floods

  • 05/08/2015
Thousands of villages have been affected by the floods (Reuters)
Thousands of villages have been affected by the floods (Reuters)

Floods from days of torrential rain have claimed at least 180 lives in India with one million people sheltering in relief camps after fleeing surging waters, officials say.

Rivers have burst their banks, hitting thousands of villages in parts of West Bengal as well as northeastern Manipur state, where roads and bridges have been cut and communications were patchy.

Most of those 180 died from drowning, while at least four people have been killed in a landslide that buried a remote village in Manipur bordering Myanmar, where heavy monsoon rains have also wreaked havoc.

The death toll jumped from around 120 on Monday (local time), after the discovery of more bodies in West Bengal and the western state of Gujarat where water levels have receded, allowing families to return home.

"The death toll due to flooding in West Bengal rose to 70, with roads and farms in 13,200 villages remaining under water," disaster management minister Javed Ahmad Khan told AFP.

"Nearly 1.2 million people are now staying in around 1600 relief camps opened in schools and government offices."

The release of water from brimming dams has exacerbated the flooding in West Bengal after Cyclone Komen struck the east coast on Friday, Khan said.

"Rivers in 13 districts are flowing over their danger marks. The situation is grim."